This People’s Heart Has Grown Dull

This meditation is based on a passage for July 25, 2010 in the Daily Lectionary Year 2 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).

Text: Acts 28:23-31

Reflection and Question: The quotation from Isaiah that Paul uses here in response to the mixed opinions of his message by the Jews in Rome has perplexed me since seminary. Why would God close our ears to the truths God shares with us through prophets then and now? Paul doesn’t answer. Instead, he simply leaves the Jews in their disagreement and approaches the Gentiles who will listen. Perhaps the Gentiles listen because the Gospel is fresh for them. Whose hearts are dull and who are willing to listen now?

Prayer: Eternal God, spare us the sad end of closed ears, dulled hearts and bickering. When we hear a preacher like Paul, may we listen and receive Your healing with joy. Send us prophets who speak with boldness and without hindrance. Amen.